Going through cancer treatment can be a challenging time, so we’ve put together a list of changes you can make to your bedroom to help ease the process and side effects. This list is also great for anyone who is looking for a way to support a friend or loved one. Here are some things you can add to and remove from the bedroom during cancer treatment.
Things to Remove From the Bedroom
- Remove clutter. Your bedroom should be a clear space where you can focus on resting. Your environment plays a big role in determining your mood and having clutter around can have an impact on your mental health. Its presence can add more stress, anxiety and depression to your life at a time when you really don’t need it. In fact, studies have shown that clutter can lead to increased levels of cortisol, a stress hormone. Clear all unnecessary objects out of the bedroom so you only have the necessities nearby.
- Remove technology. It may be tempting to keep a television in your bedroom, but your bedroom should be a space to focus on resting. Sleep is when our body heals. It’s such an important part of the cancer journey. Even when you’re using TV as background noise to help you fall asleep, you are still being stimulated by it and it could impact your sleep quality. Even if you consciously want to fall asleep, your mind is picking up the sights, lights, and sounds of the television. In fact, the blue light that your TV puts off simulates natural daylight to your brain. That means your circadian rhythm won’t switch into nighttime mode and your body won’t produce melatonin. Ultimately, no matter how exhausted you are, having a television in your bedroom can prevent you from getting the rest you really need.
- Remove strong-scented candles, incense, or wall plug-ins. These fragrant items can be sources for increased nausea and artificial scents can cause headaches. Try more subtle, natural room refreshing scents instead.
Things to Add To the Bedroom
- Add room-darkening window coverings. Studies show that the darker (and cooler) your bedroom is, the better you sleep. Opt for room darkening drapes for a better night’s sleep.
- Add inspiring decor. The surrounding can make a positive impact on the patient. Decorate the wall with happy moments or cute wallpapers that can lighten up their mood whenever they see. You could also hang their favorite things that hold sentimental value.
- Add motivational quotes. The patient may feel better about his or her day if he or she wakes up to encouraging phrases. If the space is fairly gloomy, some neon signs (you can find on http://www.neonfilter.com) could make the room look quite stylish.
- Add a sound machine. Some cancer treatments, or additional medications (like steroids), can make it difficult to get a good night’s sleep. They can make us restless, and a lighter sleeper than we used to be. A sound machine can be relaxing and also drown out any outside noise that may disturb you. A fan that generates some white noise can also do the trick.
- Add a daily devotion and/or journal. Consider keeping a daily devotion or journal next to your bed to either start or end your day with. They can be helpful when sorting through difficult emotions, or a wonderful reminder to count our blessings no matter what the circumstances are.
- Add high-quality bedding. This is a great time to upgrade bedding, pillows, and the mattress by checking out guides like Vispring mattress alternatives which can help with finding the best mattress at a good price. This can be a great gift idea for friends and family who want to do something nice for you! Haven’t changed your mattress in… a while? Studies suggest that you should replace your mattress every 6-8 years.
- Add a bookshelf. There are so many great books to help us through our cancer journey. Add a bookshelf for books you want to read. (But don’t use it as a place to dump too many other objects. See #1 on this list: Remove clutter).
If you’re looking for some books on cancer, here’s what our Survivor Advisory Council recommends.